Tag Archives: liberal democrats

Liberal Democrats need to oppose this government with more passion and rage

Thank heaven we have had no major crises while our Government is weak and split. The lordly predecessors of the present set must have turned in their graves when Cabinet responsibility was temporarily abandoned, in defiance of historic practice. The ghosts should then have howled when leading Tories began to spit insults at each other and denounce the supposed lies of their colleagues.

Yet we are stuck with this Tory Government, in or out of the EU. This collection of sophisticated predators, who systematically promote the interests of their own kind and seek the further enrichment of the moneyed classes despite the deep inequalities in Britain, know how to survive.

Where was Iain Duncan Smith’s consciousness of his Government’s preferring tax cuts for the wealthy when poor and disabled people, hit by his benefit cuts, were struggling to survive? Those were the days when David Cameron’s response to Nick Clegg’s attempts to adjust the balance of taxation in favour of the poor was ‘But our donors wouldn’t like it’, and the reply to requests for more public housing was ‘It would only create more Labour voters’. Yet, only this year did Duncan Smith apparently find his conscience and notice that the parrot-cry of ‘We are all in this together’ was false.

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged and | 44 Comments

A big day of internal Lib Demmery ahead

So, we’ve not even had a proper weekend off since the election. Two weeks ago we were all knackered and had loads of clearing up to do. Last week we were all on INtogether stalls. Now, this Saturday, our minds turn to future party strategy across Britain.

In Scotland, the party executive gathers for the first time since achieving a better result than most of us expected. We have a lot to chew over in terms of future strategy and we’re taking a day to do it. We’re having to follow Willie to North East Fife where he’ll spend some time with us before heading off to a local agricultural show.

In England, English Council meets in London.

However, the biggest and most immediate decision will be taken by the Welsh Liberal Democrats at a special conference in Powys. They will be debating whether Kirsty Williams should take up a seat in the Welsh Cabinet as Education Secretary.

Posted in News | Also tagged , , and | 7 Comments

Wounded Liberal Democrats (Canine injury branch) founded #libdemsbiteback

tony and pw2Here’s a photograph of a very special occasion on Friday evening. At Newbury’s Corn Exchange (a venue which may well go down alongside the Norbreck Castle hotel, Blackpool in Lib Dem history) there was the inaugural meeting of Wounded Liberal Democrats (canine injury branch).

Our photo shows Tony Ferguson (eve of poll dog bite in Portsmouth while campaigning for Gerald Vernon-Jackson’s highly successful team) and Paul Walter (dog bite while pushing in a “We called on you today” leaflet in Elizabeth O’Keeffe’s victorious gain from the Tories in Newbury Victoria). These two have over sixty years Liberal party/Liberal Democrat campaigning experience between them (so perhaps they should have known better before annoying my fellow hounds – Newshound)

Posted in Humour and Party policy and internal matters | Also tagged | 16 Comments

Can the Lib Dems learn from the Church?

One of the obligatory truths of being a university student is that you become nocturnal. Staying awake until the small hours of the morning and rising just in time to get to your next lecture, even if that lecture is in the afternoon. It was on one of these nocturnal sessions that led me to watch ‘The Battle for Christianity’, written and presented by Professor Robert Beckford currently Professor in theology at Canterbury Christ Church University. This documentary took a look at where the heartbeat of Christianity is today, debunking the myth that church is still uniformly done to the keys of an organ.

As a practicing Christian, I have often perched myself on an uncomfortable pew, listened to the preacher, sat back and thought to myself, ‘the church and the Lib Dems are incredibly similar.’ This thought has occurred to me far too many times for me not to share it. Using ‘The Battle for Christianity’ and my own experience within the Liberal Democrats, I will seek to explain how to church has changed over my (relatively short) lifetime and what the Lib Dems can learn from this.

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged | 22 Comments

Lib Dem MPs split 3 ways over Sunday Trading laws

Our band of 8 split 3 ways last night in the Sunday trading debate which saw the Government defeated. That is not actually as bad as it sounds. Alistair Carmichael quite rightly decided it was none of his business as it was relating to England and Wales only. The SNP voted against, presumably to distract attention of the London media from the disastrous figures which showed that the oil price would have an independent Scotland with a massive £15 billion deficit. Maybe that will make people realise the bullet we dodged when we voted against independence. I won’t hold my breath, though. The SNP seem to be on a mission to upset England, too. Their excuse was that they were protecting workers’ rights in Scotland, a spurious assertion given that shop workers don’t generally get paid more for working Sundays, which are not restricted here. And if they were that bothered about workers’ rights, surely Nicola Sturgeon wouldn’t be quite as snarky with Willie Rennie when he brings up working conditions at Amazon. Let’s not forget that SNP cuts to local government are going to mean thousands of council workers losing their jobs, too.

A cynic might think that they were actively creating such antipathy towards them in the hope that it would encourage England to vote to leave the EU, even though they are in favour of and are campaigning for a Remain vote. It’s like when they said they wanted Ed Miliband as PM last year but told everyone in England and Wales to vote for the Greens and Plaid.

Posted in News | Also tagged , and | 18 Comments

Lib Dems publish gender pay gap – or lack of it

For International Women’s Day, the party has published the gender pay gap for its employees. And it’s good news.

Liberal Democrats fought hard in coalition for large companies to publish the discrepancy between what they pay men and women to help close the gap of gender inequality in the workplace.

As of March 8th 2016 the annual gender pay gap for staff employed by Liberal Democrat HQ was 0.4%, with women earning more than men on average.

Liberal Democrats are working hard to encourage a better gender balance within the party and a motion on Electing Diverse MPs will be voted upon in its upcoming Spring Conference.

Posted in News | Also tagged | 2 Comments

Former BBC Director General: Liberal Democrats secured better settlement for BBC

Former BBC Director General Mark Thompson has told how the Liberal Democrats in coalition government secured a “different and better” settlement for the BBC. Now that the Conservatives are unmoderated, things are not so good for what many feel is the highest quality public service broadcaster in the world.

The Guardian reports:

Giving his his first interview about the BBC since he left in 2012, after eight years at the helm, Thompson said the broadcaster was having to pay for government policy. “It’s welfare … It’s totally inappropriate to use BBC to support social transfer in this country.”

When George Osborne tried to impose the same cost on the BBC during negotiations in 2010, Thompson started writing his resignation letter, along with several BBC Trustees. This July the current director general, Tony Hall, agreed to shoulder the burden in return for relief from other costs.

“In 2015 the political circumstances are very different and it is much tougher for the BBC. In 2010 it was the coalition government and the Liberal Democrats … played a very big part in securing a different and better settlement. That recourse has not been available to the BBC this year.”

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged , and | 4 Comments
Advert



Recent Comments

  • User AvatarStevan Rose 30th May - 1:16am
    That Home Office guidance made me laugh out loud. Do they not know there are "other" uses for canned whipped cream that might make one...
  • User AvatarStevan Rose 30th May - 12:40am
    It's not reform of the House of Lords that's needed it's abolition and replacement. Accepting a seat there is hypocrisy. Fight for abolition from outside....
  • User AvatarRichard Underhill 29th May - 10:33pm
    The BBC programme ends in 1918 and therefore ignores the political events after WW1. It includes evidence about the effectiveness of the blockade. If the...
  • User AvatarNigel Jones 29th May - 10:29pm
    I think one of the main themes of Christianity is the breaking down of barriers of all kinds, including national ones. Forming alliances with other...
  • User AvatarDavid Raw 29th May - 10:25pm
    Yes, I saw that too Richard. Confirmed my view that Asquith's policy in imposing the blockade was ultimately more important than Lloyd George's hyperactivity and...
  • User AvatarRichard Underhill 29th May - 9:55pm
    Dan Snow led an analysis of the Battle of Jutland, with the help of the Royal Navy, shown on BBC2 at 9 pm on 29/5/2016....